If architects were confectioners, weathered Corten steel would be their chocolate. It can seem like every other other modern home today is now covered in the visually rich and rusty cladding, concealing a sweet creamy interior. That’s certainly the case for Grow Box, a two-story Massachusetts home slathered in dark steel. Inside, luminous white rooms give off onto small courtyards to bring a taste of the outside in.
Designed by Merge Architects—creators of a quirky many-doweled home—the 1,975-square-foot home was built for a tree-loving family of three. Every room is coupled with its own "slot garden," giving visitors a view of nature no matter where they are within the home.
The heart of the home is a Himalayan birch tree ensconced within a 30-square-foot interior courtyard designed to capture snow in the winter and rain in the summer. The home may look a bit fortress-like from the outside, but its many large windows and small gardens help to root it in season and landscape.
The family has cultivated more than 40 types of Japanese maple trees, among other plants growing in and around the three-bedroom home. The floors are white oak. The cabinets are from Ikea.